10 Ways I'm Going To Make Sure My Spring Semester Is Successful

10 Ways I'm Going To Make Sure My Spring Semester Is Successful

I want to have a great spring semester, so I'm taking some steps to ensure I get there.

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Now that I'm approaching my second semester of college, I want to make it better than the fall. My transition during my first semester was rough and I found myself slipping into a depressive episode by the end. These are the steps I'm going to implement into my daily routine to keep myself healthy and happy this semester.

1. Keep a sound sleep schedule.

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As a college student, this seems like wishful thinking. However, I know I function better in the morning and have never been able to stay up until the early morning doing work. Because of this and the fact that I have morning classes all week, I'm going to try to maintain a schedule, as much as I can. This includes sleeping at the same time every night and waking up at the same time.

2. Follow a consistent morning routine.

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The morning is my favorite time of day and I want to optimize it so that I start off the day feeling put together and happy. My routine includes eating breakfast, meditating, and checking my planner for the day. Becoming more consistent with these steps will give me the most benefit throughout the day.

3. Journal almost every night.

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Journaling is my favorite thing to do when I have a lot on my mind at night. Getting it all out on a piece of paper is relaxing and so helpful in relieving anxiety and stopping me from overthinking. I follow this up with a daily gratitude practice which I have previously written an article on.

4. Eating healthy and keeping a workout routine.

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Diet and exercise are two of the most important things I can do for myself. Making better decisions in the dining hall makes me feel fueled and ready to go, as well as scheduling in a daily stint at the gym to relieve stress and build strength. Preparing a routine for myself ahead of time and sticking to it can make going to the gym less intimidating.

5. Work on time management.

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Time management is the most difficult thing for a college freshman to learn. We go from very structured schedules to having loads of free time around classes. Figuring out how to use that time is slightly overwhelming. Scheduling out blocks of time for designated work and also time for leisure can make using that time in a balanced way more approachable.

6. Stay organized.

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Keeping a planner to keep my day organized, as well as keeping my space organized is imperative to being a successful college student. You know what they say, a cluttered space means a cluttered mind, and we don't have time for a cluttered mind.

7. Make time for my social life.

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No one said successful college students can't have a social life! Last semester, I found it difficult to make friends and rarely went out. This just added to my loneliness and, therefore, my depression. Nourishing your friendships and connecting with other students is more important than you think!

8. Fit in "me" time.

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Everyone knows self care is important, but oftentimes college students get too caught up in the stress and busyness of school that we forget to take care of ourselves until we're completely burnt out. Scheduling some time in once a week or more for some good ol self care can do wonders for the psyche.

9. Read for fun.

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I always miss reading books I want to read when I'm in the throws of the semester. It seems like we have no time, but if we intentionally delegate time for reading, it makes it easier to find the time to do it.

10. Take breaks.

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Taking breaks, whether it be breaking up my study time or going home for a weekend away from school, is a good way to avoid burnout. Giving my mind and body some rest will keep me in tip-top shape so I can do my best work.

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For Camille, With Love

To my godmother, my second mom, my rooted confidence, my support

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First grade, March. It was my first birthday without my mom. You through a huge party for me, a sleepover with friends from school. It included dress up games and making pizza and Disney trivia. You, along with help from my grandma, threw me the best birthday party a 7-year-old could possibly want.

During elementary school, I carpooled with you and a few of the neighborhood kids. I was always the last one to be dropped off, sometimes you would sneak a donut for me. Living next door to you was a blessing. You helped me with everything. In second grade, you helped me rehearse lines for history day so I could get extra credit. In 4th grade, you helped me build my California mission.

You and your sister came out to my 6th grade "graduation". You bought me balloons and made me feel as if moving onto middle school was the coolest thing in the entire world.

While you moved away from next door, you were a constant in my life. Going to Ruby's Diner for my birthday, seeing movies at the Irvine Spectrum and just hanging out, I saw you all the time. During these times, you told me about all of the silly things you did with my mom and dad, how my mom was your best friend. I couldn't have had a greater godmother.

In middle school, you pushed me to do my best and to enroll in honors. You helped me through puberty and the awkward stages of being a woman.

Every single time I saw you, it would light up my entire day, my week. You were more than my godmother, you were my second mom. You understood things that my grandma didn't.

When you married John, you included me in your wedding. I still have that picture of you, Jessica, Aaron and myself on my wall at college. I was so happy for you.

Freshmen year of high school, you told me to do my best. I did my best because of you. When my grandma passed away that year, your shoulder was the one I wanted to cry on.

You were there when I needed to escape home. You understood me when I thought no one would. You helped me learn to drive, letting me drive all the way from San Clemente to Orange.

When I was applying to colleges, you encouraged me to spread my wings and fly. You told me I should explore, get out of California. I wanted to study in London, you told me to do it. That's why, when I study abroad this Spring in London, I will do it for you.

When I had gotten into UWT, you told me to go there. I did and here I am, succeeding and living my best in Tacoma. I do it for you, because of you.

When I graduated high school and I was able to deliver a speech during our baccalaureate, you cheered me on. You recorded it for me, so I could show people who weren't able to make it to the ceremony. You were one of the few people able to come to my actual graduation. You helped me celebrate the accomplishments and awards from my hard work.

When your cancer came back, I was so worried. I was afraid for you, I was afraid of what I would do without the support you had always given me. When I was in Rome, I went to the Vatican and had gotten a Cross with a purple gem in the middle blessed by the Pope to help you with your treatments. It was something from me and a little bit of my mom in the necklace, the gem.

Now, sitting so far from you away at college just like you wanted me to. I miss you. I wish I was there to say goodbye.

I'll travel the world for you, write lots of stories and books for you, I will live life to the fullest for you.

You are another angel taken too early in life. Please say hello to my parents and grandma in Heaven for me.

Lots of love,

Haiden

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Hey ECU, We Really Need Some More Parking, But Sure, Go Ahead And Spend The Money On ANOTHER Student Center

Seriously, who decides what our tuition should be spent on?

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I get the "I'm here" text, and I bound down the stairs and plop myself into my friend's car. "Where can I park?" Craning my neck to search for an empty spot, I reply, "Wherever you see an open spot. This is war." We spend the first 15 minutes of our visit together driving around, waiting for those blessed white lights to signal someone leaving.

Later on that night, my friend mentions they're hungry. I hype them up to go to the new student center, given all the options. "Should we drive to it?"

I laugh, "And give up our spot?" We pull up the bus schedule and wait for the next one.

While munching on Canes' chicken, we sit and talk. "This place is HUGE." I shrug, and then they ask, "You don't like it?" I sigh and proceed to tell them what I'm about to tell you.

I love the student center. It's cool. A nice place to do homework, and it does give more options for food. But I remind my friend about our parking ordeal. "We need more parking but… Did they spend our money to build this instead? We didn't NEED this."

This may not seem like a big deal, but this isn't the only problem students have on campus.

We are shocked when we have hot showers. We are paying literal thousands to be here, and yet hot showers is a treat. Isn't that kind of a basic expectation?

There are about 400 students living in my residence hall, but we only have about 16 clothes washers and dryers. People won't move their stuff in a timely manner, so we have to wait (or some people just take your clothes out).

My friend is having to go on the "Elimination Diet", due to the fact that she constantly breaks out into heat rashes all the time, which may actually be allergic reactions to some food she's eating. But how can she even maintain this when the dining halls really offer no healthy food options?

Buses are continuously overcrowded. But we will see buses continuing routes, with the words "NOT IN SERVICE". People stand around and wait for the next one.

When walking to the library from my dorm (because the bus is overcrowded), I can spot an unfinished, unnecessary sidewalk that ends in the middle of… nowhere. They took the time and resources to build a sidewalk with no purpose.

I'm not trying to complain. I'm trying to bring attention. We have a new student center, but we can't have hot showers?

I feel like things need to be re-prioritized.

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